Im a Full Stack Developer but what does that mean?

Im a Full Stack Developer but what does that mean?

For a few years now I have told people I am a full stack developer so I thought I’d explain what it is and what it means – at least to me anyway.

Being a full stack developer means that you are able to develop the frontend of a website (the part you see in your browser) and you can also build the backend (the stuff behind the scenes) part of it as well.

A simple example of this could be a contact form on a website. A frontend developer builds the form so that you can fill it out and determines how it looks. A backend developer develops a function for what happens after the form is submitted – things like sending it to an email address or a database. Basically, a full stack developer can do both those things.

Typical frontend skills:

  • HTML
  • CSS
  • JavaScript / jQuery
  • Vue / React / Angular
  • JSON
  • Sass / Less
  • Grunt / Gulp / WebPack

Typical backend skills:

  • PHP / ASP / C++ / C#
  • Java
  • Python
  • Node.js
  • REST
  • SQL

Those skills are not a definitive list and a full stack developer might not use all of those languages – they might just utilize a select few of them.

It’s also common to find that a full stack developer leans more on one side – personally I began as a front end developer and the back end stuff came later in my career mostly because of necessity but also because I ‘m always interested in the how and why things work.

Every day is a school day

Even though I feel like I am competent in what I do I’m sure most developers will agree that they learn something new most every time they work on a project. It might be just a nice little snippet of CSS that helps with design or a handy serverside function to use – whatever it is, there are normally 1001 ways to the exact same thing with code and you’ve got to be flexible in your learning and use of that learning as any type of developer.